Dead Can Dance are a Neoclassical Dark Wave English-Australian band who originally formed in 1981. The band then disbanded in 1998, only to reform in 2005 for a world tour and again in 2012 to create ‘Anastasis’. I have to admit, I’d never heard of them till my Dad played a track, and I can tell you, it was instant love.
The album opens with ‘Children Of The Sun’, which wouldn’t be out of place performed in a church with its air of holiness and its sense of grandeur; synths glisten, guitar chimes and brass fill the gaps as Brendan Perry’s voice softly booms and echo’s. ‘Anabasis’ has an Eastern exotic sound to it, added to by Lisa Gerrard’s heavenly vocals which are like something you’d hear on the ‘The Lord Of The Ring’s’ soundtrack. ‘Agape’ follows this Eastern tone with wailing strings and a seductive steady beat, creating a hypnotic atmosphere; you can picture belly dancers round a campfire in the dead of night.
‘Amnesia’ breaks away from this. It’s melancholic and regretful with its lonel
y piano, slow pace and shimmering organ and Perry’s vocals are deep and mournful. ‘Kiko’ continues this mood with its commanding opening and Pornography era Cure feel. This is effortlessly mixed in with an Eastern style guitar melody and Gerard’s Elf like vocals that soar high above. ‘Opium’ is softer and innocent, led by tribal drumming, and Perry’s deep vocals, which sound more hopeful. ‘Return Of The She-King’ again sounds like a track from The Lord Of The Rings soundtrack. It’s proud, grand, royal and has a celebratory feeling to it.
The closing track ‘All In Good Time’ is dreamy as his creamy vocals and the sleepy violins wash over you, like gentle waves lapping on the shore.
Listening to Anastasis is more than just listening to an album, it’s an experience and an emotional journey.